Championship’s roll call: WWE Champion: CM Punk… World Champion: Big Show… Intercontinental Champion: Kofi Kingston… United States Champion: Antonio Cesaro… Tag Team Champions: Team Hell No… NXT Champion: Seth Rollins… Diva’s Champion: Eve Torres
Jimmy Uso (w/Jey Uso) vs. Jinder Mahal (w/Heath Slater): Mahal hits an armdrag and plays some air sitar. There is an actual “3MB” chant going on here. If these three are allowed to show personality like they have been, they’ll get over REAL quick. Mahal takes him down, frustrating the Samoan, so he punches him in the mouth. Chops follow. Mahal reverses a cross-corner whip but meets a boot; Jimmy tries to come off the second rope but Mahal pulls his leg out and Jimmy bumps the back of his head onto the turnbuckles on his way down. Mahal takes over with knee drops in the ropes. He takes his head off with a short clothesline for two; a nasty hammer-toss keeps Jinder atop. Jimmy gets a shot in but Mahal keeps him down with some stomps. He tries to whip him off the ropes but Jimmy reverses, sending Mahal to the floor, he follows up by leaping off the apron with a shoulderblock. Slater gets an air guitar distraction as Jimmy is reentering and Mahal capitalizes with a neckbreaker in the ropes, for two. Jinder applies a chinlock as we head to break. We return with Mahal still holding the chinlock. Jimmy frees himself but Mahal hits a reverse elbow, plays more sitar, and reapplies the chinlock. Uso comes back again, this time a backdrop suplex is his choice. Jimmy begins the comeback with clotheslines, a savate kick and Samoan drop; the Samoan Avalanche follows for two. Mahal kicks Jimmy’s leg and hits the leaping knee; the Camel Clutch is attempted but Jimmy shimmies underneath and flips Mahal over into a cradle for two. Jinder hits a tilt-a-whirl side slam for two. Mahal makes mean faces and tries a full nelson slam but Jimmy pushes him off and wipes him out with a superkick. Jimmy hits a top rope Superfly Splash (three quarters across the ring) for three. 6/10 Entertaining opening match for the show; the chinlock was a little long but it was still good. The Usos trade wins with 3MB in a highly competitive tag division.
Here is your winner… Jimmy Uso @ about 10:10 (broadcast) via Superfly Splash pinfall.
A video package of Wade Barrett knocking people out in bareknuckle fights is shown. After that, the segment from Raw involving John Cena, AJ Lee, Vickie Guerrero and Dolph Ziggler is shown.
Justin Gabriel vs. Tensai: Gabriel avoids Tensai as the fans are all over him with mean chants. He keeps playing keep-away, keeping Tensai off-balance, until he levels him with a forearm. Gabriel tries to use speed again with a springboard move but Tensai shoves him to the floor. Gabriel sells a foot injury; Tensai gives chase and steamrolls him on the floor. Tensai drops some elbows and head-butts him. Fans continue to torture him with “Albert” chants. He keeps Gabriel down with another shoulderblock. Gabriel fights back with a few forearms but Tensai keeps him down with a Hog Log looking move except he drops the leg onto the shoulder. Nice move, there. Tensai works the arm as we head to break. When re return Gabriel is trying a comeback but a big boot and stalling butterfly suplex puts him back down again, for a nearfall. He tosses him into the buckles with the arm hammerlocked; he follows up mauling Gabriel in one corner with an armlock and a nasty hammer-toss in the other. Tensai brings back the ol’ trapezius hold, a usual for Japanese heels. Gabriel tries to CREATE SPACE but Tensai doesn’t allow it and slaps on a kneeling armbar. He slams Gabriel a few times but Gabriel escapes a third; Tensai upends him with a clothesline and tries a Vader Bomb and connects… for two? Wow, I figured that’d be the conclusion. Tensai tries a powerbomb but Gabriel pulls a Kidman Counter and gets two. Tensai misses a charge in the corner and Gabriel rolls him up for THREE! Post-match, Tensai tries to get at Gabriel but he escapes and celebrates. 5.5/10 Boring match, good ending; I’ll take a Gabriel victory any way I can. Tensai is going nowhere and jobbing occasionally to a light heavyweight is okay to boost a younger superstar. Not sure where they go with Tensai from here, perhaps repackage? I assume the plug may be pulled soon.
Here is your winner… Justin Gabriel @ about 10:20 (broadcast) via schoolboy rollup.
The end of the show is the Brad Maddox promo, minus the Vickie Guerrero part…
Suspended referee Brad Maddox, for costing Ryback the WWE title in HIAC, comes out to ‘splain himself. Michael Cole is there to interview him. We see highlights of the low blow/fast count from the PPV. Cole asks him why and if he is in cahoots with CM Punk and Paul Heyman. Maddox says that he is working alone and it was his plan all along. He starts with his dream of becoming a WWE Superstar. Fans “what” him. He says that he has tried and tried to become a WWE wrestler, including paying $2,000 to get a tryout match, and all he got was a crappy developmental contract. Even then, he still did not get noticed, he feels because he is small or because he is generic. Maddox continues with WWE officials told him he’d never make it to the main roster; his fire grew and he vowed to make it to the WWE. So he became a referee. Once Raw expanded to three hours, then GM AJ Lee called him up, and he got his one chance to make an impact. He says that he was wrong and Punk had no idea what was coming, much like Ryback. Fans chant “feed me more.” His dream is to be a WWE Superstar; he wants a contract and a match with Ryback? Is he crazy? Mr. McMahon shows up to the shock of the fans and Maddox; he feels that Punk and Heyman are behind this. Vince says the he’ll get a million dollar contract… if he DEFEATS Ryback. He kicks Maddox out of the ring and leaves. 7/10 Okay, this high score is for the Maddox part. I like the explanation and it fits well into many smaller wrestlers’ complaints about the WWE. I don’t think he’ll beat Ryback but Creative has a week to figure something out. As long as he does not go the Danny Davis route, becoming an über jobber, and then a referee again, he’ll be fine.
OVERALL 6/10 The matches were a little boring in parts but entertaining nonetheless. I like the direction of the “AJ Scandal” the WWE is going with Cena and the Brad Maddox stuff is good too, specifically because it is different. Good show this week, especially for me, who missed two weeks of wrestling due to power outage because of Superstorm Sandy and Winter Storm Athena.
Please follow Marc Elusive on Twitter or like Marc Elusive on Facebook or check out www.marcelusive.net for reviews and recaps (of current WWE and old WWF PPVs, DVDs and VHS tapes) and a little analysis; more of a play-by-play style, like my reviews here. Thank you for all of your support.